Crosswinds get the better of pilot

This June 2007 accident report is provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, it is intended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.

Aircraft: Cessna 210.
Location: Bakersfield, Calif.
Injuries: None.
Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot was attempting to land in gusty crosswinds. The pilot, who estimated the winds were between 12 and 14 knots, with wind gusts to 18 knots, said as he turned onto base leg for he found that the wind was stronger than he anticipated and the airplane was being blown to the right of the runway centerline.

He was adjusting to line up with the centerline when the air traffic controller instructed him to go around. The pilot applied power to abort the landing when the controller then told the pilot he was cleared to land. The pilot decided to land. He reduced power and lowered the nose. When the airplane touched down it bounced three times, then went off the runway. The nose wheel collapsed and the aft firewall sustained substantial damage.

Probable cause: The pilot’s improper flare, which resulted in a loss of directional control.

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